As the climate crisis continues, Worse, indigenous peoples around the world have become leaders in the fight to protect the natural environment and mitigate the negative impacts of climate change. As groups whose livelihoods are often closely linked to land and sea, indigenous peoples tend to be disproportionately affected by these influences, while at the same time providing valuable traditional resources that Western science has long ignored. Have ecological knowledge (TEK).
TEK, also called indigenous knowledge or indigenous science, is defined by the U.S. National Park Service as “the continuous accumulation of knowledge, practices, and beliefs about the relationships between organisms in a particular ecosystem, and what is acquired thereby.” ” is defined as [I]For hundreds and thousands of years, indigenous peoples have been passed down from generation to generation and used to sustain life through direct contact with the environment. “
Although TEKs have historically been dismissed by mainstream science as illegal or irrelevant, researchers and policy makers must take this knowledge into account when studying and trying to protect the environment. It is gaining attention thanks to the efforts of indigenous advocates who insist that it should not. Today, more and more activists and scientists are working to integrate TEK into Western science to improve our relationship with the natural world, promote environmental justice, and develop effective measures to combat climate change. supports the notion that is the key.
Biden, November 2021 Administration releases memorandum of understanding to initiate US’s first federal guidance On Incorporating TEK into Government policy decision.the document is officially Recognizing indigenous knowledge as “one of many important bodies of knowledge contributing to the scientific, technological, social, and economic progress of the United States,” our collective understanding of nature world. “It also states that a new federal working group will begin to develop guidance on his TEK upgrade for agencies. engagement of the native community; and Institutional, Professional, and Public Opinions. “
“Tribal and Indigenous communities have been stewards of these lands since time immemorial,” said Brenda Mallory, chairman of the White House Environmental Quality Council. This is critical in finding solutions to the problems that disproportionately affect tribal and indigenous communities.”
In recent years, some colleges and universities have endorsed this argument and developed TEK-focused courses, research activities, and more. Northwest Indian College, a tribal institution in Washington State, offers her four-year degree, the only one in the world in the field. Its Native Environmental Science program, according to its website, “understands the changing world around them by working with indigenous knowledge systems and utilizing cutting-edge scientific methods, techniques, and tools.” I teach my students that
A growing number of state flagship schools, including the University of Arizona, the University of Minnesota, the University of Montana, the University of New Mexico, and the University of Washington, have incorporated TEK courses as part of broader ecology or Native American studies programs. Other institutions, such as the University of Kansas, home to the Center for Indigenous Studies and Science, are creating special research projects dedicated to this topic.
One of the oldest and most prominent university initiatives dedicated to TEK is the Center for Indigenous Peoples and the Environment (CNPE) at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF). Founded in 2006 by Robin Wall his chimera, a SUNY-ESF Distinguished Professor of Education and a registered member of the Citizen Potawatomi His Nation, the center serves as a bridge between TEK and Western scientific research institutes. Designed to act as a bridge. An approach to environmental sustainability. Its wide range of projects includes outreach and collaboration with Native American communities as well as recruitment and support of Indigenous students. The Center promotes the notion that TEK is “worthy not only for the wealth of biological information it contains, but also for the cultural framework of respect, reciprocity and responsibility in which it is embedded.”
One of the center’s newest initiatives, the Haudenosaunee Forest Principles Project, supports research and education about the forestlands of the Haudenosaunee Nation of upstate New York. Specific goals include bringing together indigenous leaders to consider how Haudenosaunee forest protocols and traditions can be applied to contemporary forest management practices, and Haudenosaunee elders building on his TEK. This includes creating lesson plans for Indigenous youth. CNPE co-hosts a series of forums for these elders and other practitioners to share their knowledge in the field.
In a CNPE blog post about the project, SUNY-ESF graduate student Bradley Thomas said, “As a student of forestry, it is always a privilege to have the opportunity to learn about forests from someone with indigenous knowledge.” says. He added that as a Native American student, it was an honor to hear these perspectives. “Apart from the impact this will have on my work with the forest, the biggest lesson I learned from this meeting was the resilience of the elders to impart knowledge after hundreds of years of being under attack.”●
Mariah Bohannon is Insight into diversity.
This article was published in the September 2022 issue.